If you are reading this, you might be pregnant or you just had a baby (congratulations!) and you would like to hire a professional photographer to capture this beautiful little creature and help you freeze a moment in time. You might not know where to start and how to go about picking one.
The following tips should help you do just that!
1. Style: posed, lifestyle or documentary
There are three main styles of newborn & baby photography: posed, lifestyle and documentary. This is very important that you start by picking which style you are drawn to as it will save you a lot of time in searching the perfect photographer.
My style is a mix of documentary (no posing or directions) and lifestyle (a little bit of direction). I will not be the right photographer for somebody looking for pictures of their baby wrapped and posed on different blankets and using props. There is nothing wrong with this style of photography and some photographers are amazing at it.
If you are drawn to posed newborn photography, look for a photographer who has plenty of experience and will focus on making you and your baby comfortable as well as capturing beautiful photos. Unfortunately, some amateur photographers do not follow basic safety rules and it is well worth paying for a real professional.
Within this style of photography, you might also find different variations: the amount of props, the positions, the editing style, the quality of the family photos. All of it is important as well. Make sure to look at the photographer’s portfolio and see if you connect with the images. Do not assume that the photographer will change his/her style to match your tastes. I would always advise going for a timeless style (editing and props) that will not look dated in a few years time.
If you are drawn to candid moments, lifestyle and/or documentary photography will be a better choice for you. Both styles aim to capture real moments, one with a little more directing that the other. Lifestyle and documentary newborn sessions are very relaxed and the photographer will focus on emotions and connections between the baby and the other family members. Details are not forgotten and any special blanket, toy or outfit can be a part of the session.
Lifestyle & documentary newborn sessions take place in your home. They are perfect for families with older siblings, for a Fresh 48 session, to include pets in the photos, for parents who don’t like to pose and simply parents looking to capture what it felt like to welcome a new baby at home.
Whether posed, lifestyle and documentary, any newborn photo session will be baby-led, which means that if your baby needs to be fed/changed, then you just go ahead and do it. The advantage of lifestyle & documentary photography is that we can get lovely images during those moments too.
2. Do you love their work?
Style is important, but even more important is how you feel about the images you see. Chances are that if you feel emotions by looking at other babies photographs, you are going to feel a lot more when it comes to your own.
3. Location: studio or in your own home
This question is partly linked to the previous questions as most posed photography happens in a studio and most lifestyle & documentary photography happens in the comfort of your own home.
However, there are photographers doing posed photography who can come to your home so check with them if you would like posed photos without travelling to a studio.
Again, there is no right or wrong answer here. It can be nice when having a new baby to get out of the house and get a change of scenery.
Personally, it would have been a real challenge to be on time for a photo session outside my home in the first 6 weeks, and near impossible in the first 2 weeks (I think the only expedition we did was for the BCG, and I didn’t have to apply makeup or change out of my yoga pants).
If you are worried about welcoming a photographer into your messy house, don’t be! We know what it is. Personally, I am not there to give you more work and would hate for you to feel embarrassed (I’ve been there!).
4. What would you like to do with the photographs?
This is probably the most important question of all.
If you are hiring a professional photographer to take pictures of your baby, is it to share them on Facebook or receive high-quality tangible items that you will love for years to come?
Examples of what you might consider are:
- A set of three framed prints above the baby’s crib
- A big framed print above the couch
- A gallery wall in your hallway / staircase
- An heirloom photo album
- A couple of small prints for the grandparents’ mantelpiece
- A birth announcement/thank you card
Whatever it is you are looking for, make sure to pick a photographer who offers exactly that.
I am more than happy to meet you before any booking to discuss my products and show you samples.
Photographers will generally charge a session fee (and add on the package or products afterwards like I do) or include it in an upfront package. It is very important to read and understand the pricing and packages available before confirming your booking.
The investment of a newborn/baby session varies from photographer to photographer. Although cost is an important factor, try not to make it the deciding one. Choose a professional photographer that will provide you with stunning images that you can’t live without. Choose the best newborn photographer that you can afford.
Finally, if you can, meet the photographer before booking or talk to him/her on the phone. It’s important to feel comfortable around the person who is going to (maybe) come to your home and photograph your baby and family. It is always a lot easier to relax around someone you know a little and same goes with your partner and children.
Book a consultation with me
Choosing the perfect newborn photographer isn’t easy! Let me give you a call to discuss. If I am not the right fit for you, I have no problem recommending a photographer whose style is a better fit for you.
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